How to be good neighbors

Star Parker, in her April 1 column, is intent on placing blame for the immigration issue and completely lacking in positing any solutions.

She conveniently forgets that for decades one administration after another brought corrupt dictators and their minions to learn tactics of military oppression at Fort Benning, Georgia. We taxpayers, by and large, looked the other way while our government, on our behalf, trained military brass from Central and South America how to cruelly disappear thousands of their own citizens.

The drug lords filled the power vacuum created when duly elected leaders were ousted from power. They gladly accommodated the huge U.S. market for illicit drugs. We originated the Monroe Doctrine to dissuade powers from outside the hemisphere from using colonial power to do exactly the same thing we did afterward.

Legalizing the drug trade, regulating and taxing it is a minimal first step in bringing down the violence in Central and South America. Encouraging responsible leadership in the region, even when it does not align with our likes, is a must. Refusing to meddle in our neighbors’ governance with oxymoronic military solutions is also a must.

We have treated all countries south of our border with Mexico as resource to fuel our corporate interests, running roughshod over them when their leaders insisted on self-governance that met the needs of their own citizens. We are largely responsible for the mess in Central and South America. It is time that we work collaboratively with our neighbors in ways that benefit all of us and not simply our own interests.

We have sown the wind and reaped the whirlwind in the region, and if we are to be good neighbors, we would do well to listen to and heed the cries for self-government that serve the interests of the people of those countries.

John Zeigler,


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